Spaying a pet rabbit is a surgical procedure to remove their reproductive organs, in which case, it is the ovaries for female rabbits. For male rabbits this process is called neutering and it is their testes that will be removed. This process is done only by veterinarians and licensed professionals and not all rabbits can undergo such procedure. There are factors to consider before you get them spayed or neutered, these include the rabbit’s age, needs, and their health condition. In general, spaying and neutering your pet rabbit is highly recommended.
There are very important reasons why you would want your pet rabbit to be spayed or neutered. These reasons are listed below so that you can fully understand the benefits this will provide to your pet’s well-being and your efforts in taking care of them. Bear in mind the following so you can think over whether this procedure is right for your rabbit as it reaches the right age.
Why You Should Spay or Neuter Your Pet Rabbit
• A rabbit is capable of giving birth monthly because the duration of its pregnancy is only 31 days and the maximum number of baby rabbits they can carry in a particular pregnancy is up to 12! After giving birth, they are again already capable of getting pregnant after few days. Female rabbits can start getting pregnant when they reach 5 to 6 months of age until their 5th year. So just imagine how fast rabbits multiply.
Even rabbit breeders don’t recommend rabbits getting pregnant every month because it is not healthy for the mother rabbit. Female rabbits don’t need to heat to get pregnant.
• Now that you understand how fast the number of rabbit increase, perhaps you might want to consider slowing down their overgrowing population. As of this time, there are more than 30,000 abandoned rabbits that are up for adoption and who knows by how much percent this figure will grow each month.
• You are doing your rabbit a great favor when you have them spayed or neutered. Since female rabbits can give birth every month, just imagine how much stress it gives them whenever they go through pregnancy and giving birth. More importantly, female rabbits has huge tendency to acquire cancer in the ovaries between 2 to 5 years of their life. Having them spayed can avoid this illness and increase their life.
• Bucks (male rabbits) tend to be aggressive and they are very territorial. They often look for fight with other rabbits or other pets. As it reaches puberty, a male rabbit will constantly look for mate and becomes more moody especially if they aren’t satisfied. You can have your male rabbit neutered as early as 3 ½ months or when their testicles start protruding.
• Both male and female rabbits can often have cranky mood as they age. Illnesses and other complications will also start to develop as they mature and the older they get the more they are no longer capable to sustain surgical procedures. That is why it is important that spaying or neutering them should be considered early on.
• Spaying or neutering your pet rabbit could cost you around $50 – $100 in veterinary clinics but if you acquire a pet from rescue centers, most likely, the rabbit has been neutered already. Ask the staff first to make sure if the procedure has been done.
• The rabbit must be in good health condition before the procedure. It would be best to give them proper care before their operation. Some pet owners would recommend giving acidophilus to their pet at least a week before the procedure so that the rabbit will have healthy digestion.
• Ask the veterinarian for after-surgery medications that can help your pet to recover faster. Most likely, the veterinarian will prescribe anti-pain medicines. Male rabbits will experience swelling in their scrotum that will last for several days. As long as there are no signs of infections, your rabbit will go along just fine.
• After the surgery, immediately offer them healthy rabbit foods and clean water. Provide them with anything they can enjoy or keep them busy with their chewable toys. If you have both male and female rabbits at home, separate them for the meantime while recovering from the surgery.
After their recovery period, you will notice the change in their behavior. They will become less aggressive, less territorial, and more cooperative. It’s actually easier to litter train rabbit when they are spayed or neutered because they will be using their litter box more often.